How to Get Passports

  • Print Article |
  • Send to a Friend |
  • |
  • Add to Google |

The process to get passports is not complicated although it does demand that you give great attention to detail. Specific requirements must be met or you could have your application denied. This article will explain how to get passports in 4-6 weeks, 2-3 weeks or in less than 2 weeks for those travelers who find themselves in emergency situations.

Get Passports in 4-6 Weeks

If you are in no really hurry, you can apply for regular processing following the seven steps below.

  1. Complete the application form DS-11. You should not sign the application until your are requested to do so by an authorized agent. Signing it beforehand will only require you to fill in another application.
  2. Gather proof of citizenship, proof of identity and two identical photos that are 2x2 inches. The most commonly used proof of citizenship is a certified birth certificate. A driver's license can serve as proof of identity. You need to submit a copy of your photo ID. The copied image should be on one side of an 8 1/2 by 11 inch white paper. If you do not have one or both of these documents, you need to verify others that are accepted by the State Department.
  3. Take the application form and items above to the nearest application acceptance facility. There are over 9,000 authorized acceptance facilities in the U.S. Most are located in post offices. They can also be found in county clerks offices and public libraries. If you cannot find one where you live, search a neighboring city or town.
  4. Sign the application in the presence of an authorized agent and present your Social Security card. Failure to present your Social Security card could result in a $500 fine.
  5. Pay the execution fee to the agent. The present fee is $25. Acceptable payment forms can vary so you should contact the acceptance facility if you have any questions about this.
  6. Place application, proof of citizenship, proof of identity, photos and payment for processing fee in a sealed envelope. The current processing fee is $75 for the book, $20 for the card and $95 to get both.
  7. Mail the sealed envelope to the address on the application form.


Get Passports in 2-3 Weeks

You can request expedited service if you need to get your travel document in only 2-3 weeks. To expedite your application, you should first follow the seven steps above. In addition to the execution fee and processing fee, you will need to include payment for the execution fee. This fee is currently $60. To help agents identify requests for expedited services, it is important that you write "EXPEDITE" in large letters on the outside of the envelope. To accelerate the process even more, you can mail the package by two-way overnight delivery.

Get Passports in Less Than 2 Weeks

Applicants who need to get passports in less than 2 weeks have a couple of options available to them. You can either submit the application yourself at a regional agency or authorize a private expediting service to submit it for you.

To submit the application form yourself, call 1-877-487-2778 toll-free in order to schedule an appointment at the regional agency that serves the state where you reside. You should arrive at the agency a few minutes early with your application and all the documents listed above. If everything is according to the requirements, you should receive your travel document the same day.

If you are unable to travel to the regional agency, you can contract a private expediter to submit the application for you. After completing the expediter's online application process, you should follow the instruction for getting a passport in 4-6 weeks. Instead of mailing the package from the post office, you will send the sealed envelope to the expediting service you have chosen. 

Visit U.S. Passport Service Guide to download a new passport application and access step-by-step instructions on how to apply for passport and learn to save big on airfare, accommodations, attractions and more with the free Travel Savings Tactics

Rate this Article:
  • Article Word Count: 605
  • |
  • Total Views: 4
  • |
  • permalink
  • Print Article |
  • Send to a Friend |
  • |
  • Add to Google |
>